Thus he wrote:
Cognitive dissonance happens when you are confronted with a truth that conflicts with your self-image. To reconcile the conflict, your brain automatically triggers an hallucination to rationalize-away the discrepancy.Adams illustrated the effect by reference to a tweet he had made to the effect that the terrorist group ISIS wants Hillary Clinton to win the forthcoming U.S. Presidential election.
The suggestion that ISIS prefers their candidate for President naturally makes Clinton supporters uncomfortable. Thus, according to Adams, the idea should prompt a hallucinatory reaction such as that Adams, the author of the idea that ISIS supports Hillary, must be hoping for an ISIS terrorist attack before the election, a view that reflects badly on Adams and, by implication, Trump, the candidate who Adams currently supports.
This, so Adams reports, was precisely the reaction of some to his provocative tweet, a reaction that presumably helped the Hillary-supporting tweeter feel better: Trump supporters are the bad guys hoping for a terrorist attack.
A discussion of 9/11 over at Ron Unz's Review, suggests the same effect at work among defenders of the official 9/11 narrative which holds that 19 hijackers directed by a sick man in an Afghanistan cave were responsible for destroying the World Trade Center Twin Towers, downing WTC7, and punching a hole in the Pentagon using hijacked airliners as missiles.
Some people question this theory on various grounds. For example, the collapse of WTC7 was announced in advance by the BBC and other news outlets, which suggests a controlled demolition rather than an unexpected consequence of collateral damage from the attack on the Twin Towers. Moreover, although WTC7 was hit by debris from the falling Twin Towers that ignited low intensity fires, the fires seemed to be dying down when the building collapsed.
And if WTC7 had been prepped for demolition by explosives, then presumably so also were the Twin Towers. In that case the planes flown into the Towers were merely to support the narrative of a terrorist attack and to add macabre drama to the event.
Another ground for skepticism about the official account of the collapse of the World Trade Center towers was the speed at which the buildings came down, particularly WTC7, which fell for over 100 feet at a speed of 9.01 m sec-1 sec-1, which is within one percent of the acceleration due to gravity at New York.
There seems no way to explain this free-fall collapse other than by assuming the use of explosives to remove all of the building's support columns simultaneously. Other characteristics of the fall of the WTC towers were also consistent with destruction by explosives, i.e., by controlled demolition, not aircraft impact.
The idea that WTC7 and, presumably, therefore, the Twin Towers, were rigged with explosives and brought down in a controlled demolition, is an idea repugnant to many Americans who see George W. Bush as the man who rose to the challenge of leadership when their country was subjected to a vicious terrorist attack. The claim that this official story is bunk implies that far from providing brave leadership in a time of crisis, the Bush–Cheney White House was run by Hitlerian criminals who inflicted mass murder on American citizens as a pretext for the ensuing wars on Afghanistan and Iraq.
To challenge the official 9/11 narrative about Muslims with box-cutters is thus, on Scott Adams' theory, a near perfect trigger for hallucination. Such certainly seems to be the case among participants of the recent discussion of 9/11 at Unz.com. The term "idiot" is used a mere four times, but "stupid" has been used 16 times — so far. More creatively, one defender of the official 9/11 truth went so far as to say that 'Truther “Science”[is] a complete flatlining of the human brain.’ Contemptuous epithets deployed so far, include not only the mundane asshole and basterd [old English spelling of bastard], psychotic, troll, and liar, but also, shlomo, sicko, insect, and reptile. All of which seems to confirm that faced by a challenge to deeply held ideas, hallucination rather than rational re-evaluation is the normal response, at least among those educated as most Americans are today.
Beside those discussing by whom and by what realistic means were the 9/11 attacks undertaken, is a faction intent on introducing into the discussion seemingly crazy notion that the WTC towers were brought down with mini-nukes, or space-based beam weapons. Are these seemingly nutty interventions in fact intended to induce the ill-informed to adopt evidence-free theories about 9/11 and thus, by association, discredit all critics of the official story?
In addition, there are participants in the debate anxious to provoke discussion of the role of Israel and the Mossad in 9/11, the better perhaps to discredit critics of the official story by exposing them to a charge of anti-Semitism. Certainly the persistence of both the antagonists of those who question the official 9/11 story and the advocates of crackpot 9/11 theories suggests that some of them are paid by the word.
That online discussion of 9/11 are in fact monitored and engaged in by Cass Sunstein's agents of cognitive infiltration — people paid by the US Government to infiltrate discussion of state crimes against democracy (SCADs), thus seems entirely plausible. Indeed, it would be surprising if government agents do not intervene in online discussion of government criminality. The use of agents of persuasion to protect the government's position in public forums is an old one, dating back, in America, to WW1, when the Wilson Government set up the Committee for Public Information, an agency of government to influence U.S. public opinion regarding American participation in World War 1.